Over the last 100 years polymer chemistry has flourished in all areas and enabled control over synthetic polymer architectures – including chain lengths, dispersity and monomer sequences. Compared to the architectures of biomacromolecules, these scientific achievements mainly took place on the level of primary structures. The plethora of functions carried out by proteins in nature, however, does not only result from their primary structure, but from ist folding into perfectly defined 3D structures. Striving towards a similar architectural control and function in synthetic polymers, the field of single chain nanoparticles (SCNPs) emerged. In this review, we analyze the state of the art and identify what is currently standing between polymer chemistry and perfectly controlled synthetic macromolecular architectures. Based on the current challenges in the field of SCNPs, we discuss potential avenues to break today’s barriers and explore future applications reaching beyond the current-state-of-the-art.